Monday, July 28, 2014

Show Stopper

A fine dining escape hidden in Uptown

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Somewhere between the shrinking calendar and the not-so-subtle hints from the lady, a Valentine’s Day reservation needs to be made.
 
Don't worry, we've got you covered.

Whether it's February 14 or not, your secret rendezvous awaits at an underground supper club gone brick-and-mortar: 42 grams.
 
A clandestine kitchen run by a former Charlie Trotter’s/Alinea vet in the heart of Uptown, 42 grams serves a single-set meal every night with 15 courses of expertly crafted cuisine. From Faroe Island salmon with trout roe and phytoplankton (yes, phytoplankton) to Hudson Valley duck with ash-baked eggplant, this dinner is designed to impress.
 
Each night offers an early or late seating at the communal table or chef’s counter. The space feels like your friend’s apartment (if your friend was a classically trained chef) with plush chairs surrounding a long wood table, and red leather stools lined up along the stainless steel counter.

Since 42 Grams is plating up a new kind of dinner theater, you'll want to sit at that counter overlooking the tiny kitchen, where chefs sear veal sweetbreads and plate Catalina Island uni over sea bean. 
 
The intimate space is BYOB, and chances are the woman corking your bottle of vino is the chef’s wife. You see, 42 grams is not a reference to contraband, it’s the combined weight of two souls. In this case, the souls of the couple ready to blow your mind with a meal.
 
Should you come on Valentine's Day, save that explanation for when you get home from dinner.

And enjoy your 16th course.

42 grams 42gramschicago.com
4662 N. Broadway Ave. (at W. Leland Ave.), Uptown
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Price: 4 (out of 4)
Noise: 2 (out of 4)
Subway: Red Line to Argyle
Scene: Serious epicureans and date nighters tasting the next generation of fine dining
Best bets: Sitting down, shutting up, and letting the chef do his thing
Nearby: Riviera Theatre; Agami; Magnolia Cafe

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